Holy Week is upon us and it is timely for us to reflect upon our faith. Many of us were educated in a Catholic school and as we grew up, many remained faithfully Catholic, others were ambivalent, and still others searched for their faith from other religions.
It is also not uncommon to find those who are of a certain faith exercising the practices of another. Imagine Jews celebrating Christmas, Hindus eating meat, and Catholics attending Born Again services.
How we choose to practice our religion is nobody’s business but ours. Faith is a personal choice, after all.
Seeing how fast paced, competitive, and ruthless society can be, even just a little faith is a good thing. Practicing faith gives moral foundation to our children since our faith serves as a source of comfort and strength as well as a grounding force when the going gets tough. That is something we definitely would want our kids to learn.
Have you ever noticed how people who have strong religious beliefs, or in the absence of religion, those who are spiritual, are less likely to be involved in harmful behavior like promiscuous sex and substance abuse, depression, or alcohol addiction?
Just by encouraging our children to develop their innate spirituality, that something is larger than them, is a start to set in motion their awareness of a belief system.
1. Encourage gratitude
There is so much to be thankful for. Why not make every day Thanksgiving Day? Teach your child to show appreciation for his family and for those who help make life easier for him. At night, count blessings out loud to reiterate how bountiful they are. In their prayer, include grandparents, cousins, the school’s teachers, and the community they are a part of. How lucky they are to receive so much love.
2. Be a blessing to others
Serving others may not always be easy. As wives and mothers, we serve our family. Let us do it joyfully. How are we to other members of our community? Why not visit an orphanage or donate that forgotten box of books in the garage? A phone call checking up on a friend we haven’t heard from in a while may be a godsend to them. Hopefully, our actions will inspire thoughtfulness and compassion in our children who watch our every move.
3. Mindful meditation
Being still in the middle of a busy world takes practice. Reflecting and looking inward at oneself is the first step to nurturing your spirituality. Sit back in your garden and just breathe with your child. Forget about homework or College tests for that moment. Conversation isn’t even necessary. This practice will pave the way for a more prayerful adult.
Praying doesn’t mean reciting prayers mechanically. Introducing prayer as a part of daily life will make it second nature for your children to pray and reflect. Start with simple prayers before meals or enumerating intentions at night. Praying together will form a solid base for a more prayerful adult later on.